The Election Process
2010 General Election
The last UK General Election was held on 6th May 2010. No single party won an overall majority of the 650 House of Commons seats. The conservatives won 305 seats, representing 10.7 million votes (36%). Labour won 258 seats, representing 8.6 million votes (29%). The Liberal Democrats won 57 seats, representing 6.8 million votes (23%). The Liberal Democrats and The Conservatives joined together to make a coalition because no one had enough votes to win on their own. The Process of a General Election
Fixed Term Parliament Act was passed on 15 September 2011, meaning that General Elections are now held on the first Thursday in May every five years. The date of the next general election is set at 7 May 2015. There are two situations in which a General Election will be called earlier than at five intervals. (i) A motion of no confidence has been passed by the House of Commons against the Government and 14 days has passed without the House of Commons passing a confidence motion in any newly formed Government; or (ii) A motion for a General Election is agreed by two thirds of the total number of MP’s in the House of Commons (currently 434 out of 650). You don’t do that unless you’re confident you can win that election. Once the Government has decided to call a General Election (either because the five years is up or an early election is needed), the Prime Minister will ask the Monarch to dissolve Parliament by Royal Proclamation. As well as dissolving Parliament, the Royal Proclamation also orders the issue of Writs of Elections (election campaign has started), which require an election to be held in each constituency in the UK. During this time, MP’s and their staff are not allowed to enter the House of Commons, although they will continue to get paid because they will continue to work from home, and then they try to win an election in their area. The election is held 17 working days after the date of the...
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